Taylor Construction successfully trials 5G for high-tech applications

Australia-based Taylor Construction is said to have established a new standard for 5G-enabled high-tech applications for the enterprise in Australia after completing a trial with LTE and 5G-based systems provider Cradlepoint – the first documented 5G enterprise use case with enterprise-grade 5G edge networking that it has demonstrated.

Established in 1994, Taylor Construction Australia designs, builds and develops diverse projects for all sectors, from project inception to completion. With more than 250 team members, Taylor services its clients across core divisions including construction, fitout and refurbishment and property.

In terms of communications, Taylor is already using wide area network (WAN) speeds and coverage, including 20 times the performance of its 4G connection, to support a range of bandwidth and latency sensitive connected devices and applications on its construction sites.

Following the February 2020 release of Cradlepoint’s portfolio of 5G wireless edge systems for business in Australia, coinciding with the roll-out of Telstra’s high-performance 5G network, Taylor Construction identified a construction site where it could trial Telstra’s Enterprise Wireless and Cradlepoint’s NetCloud Service for Branch, delivered through a Cradlepoint E3000 5G-optimised router with a ruggedised W2005 5G wideband adapter built for outdoor placement.

Among the applications used by Taylor with its 5G infrastructure is holographic building visualisation, comprising Microsoft HoloLens mixed-reality smart glasses that Taylor’s employees and customers can wear on-site to render a virtual model of the building or elements of the construction process, such as holographic structural steel, framing, or electrical schematics.  

Use of 360-degree 8K streaming and QR code scanning from wireless video cameras enable site workers to deploy digital induction tracking, which is said to improve risk management by automating the process of ensuring every person on-site has completed safety training. 

The 5G network also allows Taylor to use internet of things (IoT) structural sensing using smart sensors fixed to rebar and embedded in concrete aggregate, and send data to the Cradlepoint router, then on to the cloud. This helps Taylor determine whether concrete is poured correctly and track any shifting of the concrete over time.

Real-time design displays enable the Taylor team to make changes to digital blueprints in real time and display them on tablets and large monitors in trailers. Going forward, the 5G infrastructure is seen as enabling large-site failover.

Taylor’s IT team is interested in investigating the replacement of the company’s expensive back-up fibre line with 5G, gaining fibre-like speeds with the diversity of a wireless connection.

Taylor noted that such applications require real-time data, which is only possible with immense bandwidth, low latency and constant uptime at the edge of the network with 5G. “The Cradlepoint 5G solution, enabled by the Telstra 5G network, has transformed our ability to employ high-performing, enterprise-grade applications, top to bottom,” said Christian Neyle, IT manager for Taylor Construction. 

“The 5G performance the company is now getting will enable it to deploy its current 5G-ready high-tech applications, made possible by the wireless WAN. To some people, this is science fiction; to me, this is the next generation of business. We could have used fibre, but mobility was also important, which is why 5G is the only solution that works.”

CradlePoint said the case study showed that the future of 5G for business has officially landed. “Taylor Construction is an example of how organisations can use 5G to transform their business and drive new ways to reduce costs, improve operational efficiency and compete,” said Cradlepoint CEO George Mulhern. 

“Taylor was able to leverage 5G to quickly implement innovative new applications – so can just about any business in any industry. The future is here, so now is the time to get on the pathway to 5G.”

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